Aspiring healthcare students from Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College (QE), Darlington, have had the unique opportunity to sample a variety of different careers through a Discover Health Day at Teesside University. The interactive and engaging sessions, delivered by higher education tutors and healthcare professionals, allowed students to obtain a valuable insight into all branches of nursing, midwifery, operating department practice, paramedic science, radiography, physiotherapy, sports therapy and chiropractic by taking part in practical activities within each role. The event began with academics providing detailed information about the courses available at Teesside University before offering advice on what admissions tutors look for in prospective healthcare professionals. Students were then able to get to grips with some of the skills taught on the courses, with those interested in midwifery being taught how to deliver a baby through the use of a mannequin and students hoping to study paramedic science boarding the University’s ambulance simulator and learning about its functions. The groups were also tasked with identifying bones in a skeleton, delving into the day-to-day life of a healthcare undergraduate.

First year student, Ruva Kanonge, who studies A Level Psychology, Sociology and Health and Social Care at QE, was particularly impressed with the midwifery and nursing activities. The 18-year-old, from Thornaby, comments: ‘I really enjoyed the practical sessions. Using patient simulators was a fantastic opportunity to learn about ante-natal care and it was great to experience delivering a baby. Attending the three separate sessions which covered all branches of nursing was an excellent way to gain an insight into the different sectors. The visit definitely helped to confirm that midwifery is the route that I would like to take after QE.’

Jack Norris, who is also in his first year and from Darlington, aspires to study medicine and is enrolled on A Level Biology, Chemistry and Maths at the College. He took part in the paramedic science and operating department practitioner workshops, adding: ‘The sessions gave me a good understanding into two of the allied health professions and highlighted how healthcare is incredibly multi-disciplinary. It was a brilliant day.’

Liz Bryan, Higher Education and Careers Adviser at QE, concludes: ‘This was a very useful event as our students were able to engage with simulated, practical scenarios and learn about the wide range of roles available once qualified. In addition, they received expert advice on what it takes to work as healthcare professional. We’d like to thank Teesside University for hosting such an inspiring day.’